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Why I Blog

Jeff Pulver posted an idea yesterday that bears some examination.  Jeff would like bloggers to tag blatant self-promotions as advertising.  I wrote a comment to him saying that I didn’t think it would be easy for me to do that.  Some of what I write is opinion, some fact, but not much is pure advertising.  Mad VoIPer also wrote a similar although much longer piece on his blog titled Blogvertising&… stuff.  I am not sure that tagging is the right way to handle this issue either, since tagging (to me) is really about free form indexing, and I’m not sure I’d want to index advertising. 

However, I think that Jeff’s idea about truth in blogging is a valid one.  So, without further ado, here’s why I blog.

  1. The number one reason is to engage in a dialog about ideas that I think are interesting.  I am not a one-sided individual.  Who among us is?  Blogging is my outlet, my medium for self expression, my soapbox.  I am part of the mutual debating society, and mutual navel gazers club, called the blogosphere.  150 years ago, I would have been a pamphleteer.  Today, I am a blogger.  Read my series on why I believe that gay people should be allow to marry, and you will understand what makes me tick.  I love the debate, and I am passionate about the exchange and critique of ideas, and the public crucible in which they can be reduced to their essence, examined and judged upon their merit.
  2. I have opinions.  You need to know what they are!  Or at least, I like to delude myself that that’s the case.  That’s why I write about wine, and the places I visit.  I am passionate about technology, and the business of technology. What makes a great company?  Why do some companies fail?  What’s next for the current darling in the industry? So I write about technology and business too. 
  3. I want to shape the industry that I work in. I learned at Microsoft that stating an opinion, putting a stake in the ground, and rallying others to that opinion, could help to shape outcomes. Plainly and simply, at various points we will reach forks in the road, have decisions to take, and require good people to step forward and debate those decisions.  I have a view on what those are, which is why I author pieces like the Voice 2.0 Manifesto
  4. And finally, I still get thrilled by discovering something new that others might not have seen.  When I see something new, or cool, I just want to share. 

Sometimes I’m a little self promotional.  If that offends, I apologize.  But it ain’t gonna stop me;  as my friend and fellow blogger Randy Morin says, "I blog, therefore I am". 

Now you know.  And I hope you continue to read, enjoy, criticize, and debate what I have to say.   An ego the size of mine can use a little deflating occasionally. 

{ 6 comments… add one }

  • Randy Charles Morin November 29, 2005, 6:02 pm

    Well, since I have AdSense isn't every post I make self-promotion? I there4 tag all my blog entries as advertisement and since this is redundant, I won't actually do it 😉

  • Alec November 29, 2005, 7:27 pm

    All I can say is… buy coke!

  • Patrizia Broghammer November 29, 2005, 11:30 pm

    We (bloggers) simply cannot not communicate.
    Communication is our goal and our despair…

    Patrizia

  • Frank Miller November 30, 2005, 5:50 am

    I read Jeff's post and I've now read yours. I would actually refine the discussion based on two measures. First, does the blog contain advertising or not? Second, does the blogger have any agenda they are pushing? The advertising meaure should be straightforward, if someone has AdSense on their page, they can make money from the blog. That changes things a bit. The agenda thing is a bit stickier. Its one thing for a blogger to be blatantly pushing something they are selling in the blog entries. Myself, Erik Lagerway, and you to some extent fall into this category for example. Its another thing for someone to be pushing something without disclosing to the reader that they may have some interest, either financial or otherwise, in the thing being pushed. I think this last point is what Jeff was really getting at. One of the good things about the financial debacles at the end of the Bubble was that great screen you get when you see someone interviewed on CNBC, listing whether they own or their firm owns any of the stocks they are talking about. I agree with Jeff, if a blogger mentions a company and they are being "motivated" to do that in some way, the readers should know that.

  • Alec November 30, 2005, 12:44 pm

    I agree too, Frank. Taking steps to disguise your motivation is honestly, deceitful.

    I try hard to be transparent, I think, and I hope people understand where my point of view comes from.

  • Randy Charles Morin December 7, 2005, 5:45 am

    Actually, I wasn't worried about the capitalization. I only referred here because your capitalization uncovered the root cause of why BlogPulse profiles sucks.

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